I still find it hard to believe it’s happened. I’ve been in Kerala for over three years now and for the first time, I had the chance to ride on the National Highway(NH-47), albeit a scooter, but a ride nevertheless. It was awesome. I for one couldn’t get enough of it and was left wanting for more. All in all, I think we covered some 100Km up and down and luckily enough, it didn’t rain much during the day, there were of course, slight drizzles but you can handle it alright.
So, setting the scene was the fact that I had to ride from my hostel in Amritapuri, to the commissioner’s office in Kollam, to get an address verification done. I don’t own a ride in my hostel and the only ride I have back home isn’t something that’s going to make me feel proud anyways. I was a bit worried and was thinking of how I could make the trip. Yes, public transport was an option, but then I was new to the city and would have to go from one place to another, which is not the easiest of things when you know none of the places. So, while I was busy pondering the best possible solution, the answer happened to call me, quite literally. It was my cousin brother on the phone and he wanted to know if I had some time, the following day. I told him about my commitments and he suggested that I ride all the way our destination, even if it was long road ride. He brought along his scooter and since I had a valid driving license, I took up the task of driving on our way to Kollam.
What followed for the next hour or so was pure magic, at least as far as I’m concerned. After driving out of the city, we had a quick breakfast and set out on the highway. Now, I’ve been on the highways before but this was the first time I was actually riding a vehicle myself on one of the highways. The sun was shining bright and while it was a bit hot, there wasn’t much we could do about it anyways, so we just carried on with our business. We rode along, the traffic was lesser, we were cruising a decent speed of 40-60Kmph and it was joy to see the roadside greenery and the beautiful scenery as we crossed the backwaters and the Arabian Sea. There were places where the backwaters and the sea came together, but then I’ve seen it a lot of times, during my time in Kerala. Unexpectedly, it was the greenery on the roadsides, that to me felt really refreshing. This was probably the first time I was driving in Kerala and any driving that I might have done before was in Pune, a cosmopolitan city near Mumbai(I better use “Mumbai” being a resident in Maharashtra 😉 ) in Maharshtra. The riding environment is completely different and everything to me, felt really refreshing. I wished to keep going on and on and on. I eventually had to stop when we came to the sudden realization that we’d crossed Kollam already. We were then back on the city roads and it wasn’t any interesting. Just mundane stuff.
We waited at the commissioner’s office but couldn’t meet the commissioner anyways. Unfortunately for us, he had a busy day in the office. We took out time to visit the Kollam beach, where we clicked the only picture during the entire duration of the journey – something that I deeply regret now. After spending some time in the beach, we headed to have our lunch and got out after filling our stomachs and on our way back, it was my brother who did most of the driving. To be fair to him, he was quicker than me, but while he was driving, I a fair share of heart-in-mouth moments. We returned to the hostel and before we could realize, we’d covered almost 100Kms in a day. Luckily for us, our parents are away at the moment and I just can’t contemplate doing something like this while they’re around. I did inform my parents about this ride and they wanted me to take the public transport instead of driving all the way myself. My brother’s parents were not in town either and hence he was able to sneak away with the scooter. Before leaving, we promised each other that we’d do something like this once again. I think we could have our chance very soon. Since we couldn’t meet the commissioner, I’ll definitely have to make another visit to the office and usually address verification takes more than a day at the very least. So, I’m sure we’ll get our chance. That’s for sure. Above anything else, however, I just hope that we stay safe !